Twitter seems to be still vulnerable to hacks. A group of cyberattackers under the name ‘John Wick’ have gained access to the account of India’s Prime Minister (PM) Narendra Damodardas Modi and used it to promote a fake cryptocurrency schema.
After compromising his account, the attackers used this platform to scam Narendra’s followers (over 2.5 million people) to contribute Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH) donations directly to ‘PM National Relief Fund for Coronavirus’. However, the project didn’t go as expected, because the cryptocurrency address used by the criminals to collect the contributions only had less than $1 USD.
The Indian PM has now joined the list of other popular prominent people to be dragged into cryptocurrency scams. People like the ex US president Barack Obama, Kim Kardashian, 2020 presidential candidate Joe Biden, Kanye West, Warren Buffett, Elon Musk, have all been victims of Twitter attacks.
As CoinIdol, a world blockchain news outlet, previously reported, a group of cybercriminals led by Ivan Clark, a teenager from Florida US, hacked into the Twitter accounts of the aforementioned celebrities and scammed people to send in Bitcoins. The US police managed to arrest Clark and his two colleagues identified as Nima Fazeli and Mason Sheppard, and they are now facing about 30 criminal cases associated with fraud.
Since the attacks have continued to happen even when the masterminds of the recent hack are behind bars, it proves that the hackers are too many and actually some of the criminals from the previous hacks could be still on the loose.
It seems obvious that hackers used the same vulnerability in both cases. Since the same scenarios are happening in the same way, it implicates that Twitter has failed to fix this cybersecurity issue. Centralized social media platforms including Twitter and video streaming platforms such as YouTube have proved to be more vulnerable to hacks. That’s why there is a dire need to develop effective blockchain-based decentralized platforms to prevent this vice.
During the previous case, cryptocurrency exchanges have tried to protect their customers from making losses. They have been blocking any suspicious transactions going to illicit or fake wallet addresses used by criminals. For instance, Coinbase managed to save over 1,150 users from transferring Bitcoins to criminals. The users of this exchange were in the process of sending over 30 Bitcoins to thieves. Binance, Gemini, and Kraken exchanges also did the same thing to protect their users.
The tweets which were attacked were later erased. Besides the incident being confirmed by Twitter, the office of the PM hasn’t yet reacted to the event. Via the email sent to one of the news media platform, Twitter’s spokesperson told the BBC news outlet:
"We are actively investigating the situation. At this time, we are not aware of additional accounts being impacted."